International students want in the classroom

42 students from around the world wait for strike’s end

As Kimberley public school students head into the second week of  no classes due to the labour dispute between teachers and the provincial government, another group of students are hoping things will be settled soon as well.

These are students from all over the world who have come to Kimberley this year as part of the Rocky Mountain School District International Program.

Currently there are 42 students in Kimberley ready to join Canadian students for the 2014-2015 school year.

Duncan Macleod from the SD6 International Program says the students all arrived the week of August 25.

“We have record numbers for the program in the District and 42 students in Kimberley,” he said. “So far, so good. We are keeping the kids busy, doing trips and events. But it is an interesting situation, unprecedented for our program. The kids are itching to get to school.”

Macleod says that parents of all students were notified in July that the job action could carry over into September.

“We did give them the option to opt out and find opportunities in other provinces or even countries, but no one took us up on it.”

However, Macleod says that while the students are being kept busy they can’t be provided with any curricular instruction.

“And really that’s what they are here for. They want to be in the classroom with Canadian kids and Canadian teachers — especially at Selkirk where there are so many great courses. There’s really a desire to get in there. Courses like equine studies and outdoor education are a huge draw for international students.

“The stuff we are doing is engaging and interesting but they want to be in class. We are all hoping it will be resolved soon.”

 

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